Not Even That Funny

rating: +145+x

Item #: SCP-3566

Object Class: Euclid

Special Containment Procedures: Television studios producing situation comedy style shows are to be monitored for SCP-3566 manifestation. Should any production begin showing signs of SCP-3566 manifestation, the studio is to be encouraged to add a laughter track to the final edit. Should they resist, the production is to be terminated.

Outside of testing, viewing of affected media should be limited to approximately 20 minutes (the typical length of SCP-3566-susceptible programmes).

Description: SCP-3566 is a phenomenon affecting studio recordings of television programmes in the situation comedy genre, manifesting as the sound of laughter occurring over the top of the standard soundtrack of the show. The sound typically consists of an unknown number of voices laughing at inappropriate moments during the show, and often for extended periods of time. SCP-3566 manifestations change with each subsequent viewing, and have been described by observers as "unsettling" or "manic". The occurrence rate of SCP-3566 is currently approximately 10% of potential candidate shows; to date no shows have been affected retroactively following the airing of their first episode.

Individuals exposed to SCP-3566 for a prolonged period (greater than 30 minutes) will begin to suffer from headaches and dizziness. After 60 minutes of exposure, the effect of SCP-3566 will transfer to the viewer themselves; they will regularly hear the associated sound without any identified source1.

After suffering from this effect for approximately one month, in addition to the mental health issues that would typically arise from the presence of frequent auditory hallucinations, the individual will begin to undergo personality and behavioural changes. These changes are typically expressed as the extreme exaggeration of one or more aspects of the individual's personality or demeanour to the point that they override all other observable traits.

SCP-3566 was first discovered in the 1940s. A number of affected television programmes at the time were terminated prior to airing before it was discovered that the addition of actual laughter, either from a live source or added in editing after recording, suppressed SCP-3566 manifestations. Encouraging the use of laughter tracks in various television studios helped significantly reduce the rate of occurrence of SCP-3566 and has since become an accepted norm of the format.

Addendum 1
On 08/11/1972, an SCP-3566 manifestation occurred differing from its usual behaviour; instead of laughter, the sound of pained screams could be heard over the entirety of the host show. All subsequent events since this date have followed the same pattern, though the original containment procedures still appear effective at suppressing its occurrence.

Individuals exposed to this new form of manifestation for prolonged periods report sensations of dread and impending doom, followed by the sudden onset of schizoid personality disorder3 or, in rare instances, extreme cases of paranoid personality disorder.

Addendum 2
Following advances in audio analysis techniques, the sounds produced by SCP-3566 affected media were analysed and it was determined that they all originated from a single voice, distorted to sound like multiple people. Comparisons with historical interview recordings made in the early days of SCP-3566's containment showed the voice to be a match with Tommy Talico, an engineer interviewed during the initial investigation.

Investigators at his last known address found a desiccated corpse on a chair in the basement, believed to have died at some point in the early 1970s4. The chair was facing a television set, and the corpse was wearing a face mask connected to an empty tank of nitrous oxide5. Also discovered was a piece of broadcasting equipment matching no known design, the purpose of which is currently under investigation.

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